Officers of U.S. Garrison, Fort Sumter, April, 1861


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ErnieMac

Brigadier General
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#2
Anderson, Doubleday, Crawford, Foster (should read J. G. Foster), Seymour and Davis were all general officers in the Volunteer Army when the war ended four years later. All survived the war.

George W. Snyder died in Washington in November, 1861, probably of typhoid. Theodore Talbot died of tuberculosis in Washington in April, 1862. Richard Kidder Meade was from Virginia. Two weeks after Fort Sumter surrendered he resigned his commission and joined the Confederate Army. He died of typhoid in July 1862.
 

Patrick H

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#3
Nice photo, although I wish it were in better focus, but not your fault. I think it's sad to read that three of these officers died of disease. Of course, we know that many of the men who died in the war actually died of various diseases. Looking back with the benefit of that hindsight does not make it any easier to see the face of a young officer or soldier, only to find out that he was taken down by a disease. At least in that regard, we in the developed world live in a better time now.
...And I'm not shy in admitting that I hope it stays that way.
 
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#4
I'm sure it was after they arrived at New York. They were the heroes of the day, at least until Ellsworth got himself ventilated.
 
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#6
Contemporary newspapers from March advertise sales of an "exquisite portrait of Major Anderson, taken at Fort Sumter, February 8, 1861." This group shot may have been taken at the same time.
 
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#8
From the NPS book Five Flags Over Fort Sumter

"
On February 8 a Charleston photographer, George S. Cook, arrived with a camera and an assistant to capture the officers with his lens, and he spent most of the day immortalizing individual officers. Major Anderson finally obliged him by gathering everyone for a group portrait. Anderson and the three captains sat in front while five of the lieutenants gathered behind them; Lieutenant Hall was on his way back to the fort from Washington and would return in two days."
 

Robert Gray

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#11
From the NPS book Five Flags Over Fort Sumter

"
On February 8 a Charleston photographer, George S. Cook, arrived with a camera and an assistant to capture the officers with his lens, and he spent most of the day immortalizing individual officers. Major Anderson finally obliged him by gathering everyone for a group portrait. Anderson and the three captains sat in front while five of the lieutenants gathered behind them; Lieutenant Hall was on his way back to the fort from Washington and would return in two days."
One of the photographs of Anderson that Cook published.

1180.jpg
 
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#12
Why is "Captain Foster" wearing a double breasted frock coat, when such were reserved for field officers and general officers? Might he have been promoted before the picture was taken? Or might the caption simply have been mistaken?

On October 23, 1861, John G. Foster was made a brigadier general. So that picture would only make sense if it was taken after the Battle of Ft. Sumter in April, as Mike surmised.
 
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#13
Why is "Captain Foster" wearing a double breasted frock coat, when such were reserved for field officers and general officers? Might he have been promoted before the picture was taken? Or might the caption simply have been mistaken?

On October 23, 1861, John G. Foster was made a brigadier general. So that picture would only make sense if it was taken after the Battle of Ft. Sumter in April, as Mike surmised.
Richard Kidder Meade Jr. (between Davis & Talbot) resigned his commission on May 1, 1861 and headed south so the photo wouldn't have come after Foster was promoted.
 
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#14
Richard Kidder Meade Jr. (between Davis & Talbot) resigned his commission on May 1, 1861 and headed south so the photo wouldn't have come after Foster was promoted.
It wouldn't have come after Foster's promotion to brigadier in October, 1861. But would they really have jumped him four ranks, from captain all the way to brigadier, in one swell foop? Perhaps, but officers with ranks as low as major wore double breasted frock coats.

Major Robert Anderson, seated two persons to Foster's right (i.e., the viewer's left), was promoted to Brigadier on May 15, 1861. But in the picture, his frock coat is that of a field officer, not a brigadier, which would have had the buttons arranged in four pairs on each side, rather than being evenly spaced. This fact agrees with your information about Meade. So I think we can establish that the photo was taken before May 1, 1861. This strengthens the possibility that Foster might have received a more immediate promotion, to major or some grade of colonel, before that photo was taken.

Aha! A few mouse clicks have turned up the following, from:

http://www.ohiocivilwarcentral.com/entry.php?rec=1294

"The beginning of the Civil War found Foster engaged in strengthening the fortifications in Charleston Harbor. Anticipating a Confederate assault, Foster participated in transporting the Federal garrison at Fort Moultrie to the more defensible Fort Sumter on December 26, 1860. For his leadership during the transfer, Foster was brevetted to major, effective December 26, 1860. When hostilities eventually erupted, Foster served throughout the bombardment of Fort Sumter from April 12 through April 14, 1861."

The photo corroborates that some time before May, 1861, Foster held a rank above captain but below brigadier - and was presumably, a major.
 
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